As Jay pointed out last night, President Obama in a speech on Tuesday made the ridiculous claim that he has overseen eight years without a foreign terror attack on American soil, and suggesting, as Democrats frequently incorrectly do, that this is because of him somehow.
Whether he thinks it is from his bungling of every foreign policy incident, his refusal to recognize terror as a national security threat rather than a criminal act, his “JV team” idiocy, his pathetic Iran deal, or some other aspect of his term in office is not specified. Whatever reason they wrongly believe this stupid trope, it remains stupid and wrong.
As a reminder, here is a tweet of the quote in question:
"Over last 8 years, no foreign terrorist organization has successfully planned and executed an attack on our homeland" —@POTUS
— White House Archived (@ObamaWhiteHouse) December 6, 2016
Jay says Obama is playing lawyer, and I agree, but I would go further. This is beyond parsing on the President’s part. He is relying on his administration’s favorite deflection, the “lone wolf” view of terror, which is an outdated, inapplicable, and absurd concept in the modern age of terror.
While there is no direct evidence (though certainly no exculpatory evidence) of the terror orgs literally centrally planning the details of any particular attack, there is overwhelming evidence that attacks on our soil have not only been inspired and condoned by groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda but moreover that specific directives were distributed by ISIS to sympathetic, would-be terrorists around the world on how, when, and why individual, isolated attacks should occur.
What’s more, ISIS has claimed credit for attacks such as the Orlando night club. As I’ve outlined here at RedState before, ISIS is not in the habit of claiming responsibility for attacks where they are not responsible, for a variety of reasons that include regional and intercollegiate (if you will) influences.
Al Qaeda, through their magazine, and ISIS, through their website, have distributed volumes of material on how to be a “lone wolf”, on how to carry out attacks without direct support from abroad. Many of the attacks which Jay listed here followed that playbook precisely.
Terror networks today remain diffuse by design, and rely on independent cells and individuals to carry out their directives sent from afar. This is a primary manner in which these groups function. Those who participate are participating as part of the terror group. This is not complex.
What’s even more egregiously dishonest is that this oft-repeated Democrat claim simply ignores the fact that many of those who have engaged in terror in this country since Obama took office did indeed get direct support and training from terror groups, or have direct personal contact with those groups, prior to committing their acts of terror. That is direct cooperation in the decision to commit terror even if there is no notepad with a diagram and an X that says “murder Americans here” and signed “Everyone at ISIS.”
This is dangerous. It fails to recognize the threat. It fosters complacency. We have to fight the enemy the way they fight, and one of the ways they fight is suborning terror through propaganda, instruction, radicalization, and, for lack of a better word, terror manuals. They don’t have to be on the radio calling the shots on the day of an attack to be behind it. To say otherwise is false and irresponsible.
But then again, if he admitted to the terror, how could he and his pals blame guns and the “hate” of everyday Americans, right?